It had been very pleasant to sit in the sun among the pretty daffodils in his friends’ garden, but it wasn’t long before Algy heard the call of the sea again. He could never stay away from the ocean for long without suffering from Sea Fever, and he knew that there was only one remedy for that particular disorder:

      I must go down to the seas again, to the lonely sea and the sky,
     And all I ask is a tall ship and a star to steer her by;
     And the wheel’s kick and the wind’s song and the white sail’s shaking,
     And a grey mist on the sea’s face, and a grey dawn breaking,

     I must go down to the seas again, for the call of the running tide
     Is a wild call and a clear call that may not be denied;
     And all I ask is a windy day with the white clouds flying,
     And the flung spray and the blown spume, and the sea-gulls crying.

[Algy is quoting the first two verses of the popular poem Sea Fever by John Masefield.]


The light was fading rapidly as the sun sank down behind the headland, so Algy made one last effort to drag his sack of baubles to safety before darkness fell. He managed to get his treasure up into the long, spiky grasses on the edge of the dunes and, turning his back to the wind, he tucked himself down tightly into a sandy hollow to rest there for the night, while the gale continued to roar over his head and the waves crashed on the beach behind him.

Algy decided that the best thing to do was to spread himself out to dry. His feathers were still sodden and limp, and he needed to be able to fluff them up to keep himself warm. The days were very short now, as midwinter approached, and he knew that he didn’t have long before darkness fell. So he stretched himself out on the seaweed as the tide receded, and relaxed for the first time since the big storm swept in.

Algy was feeling utterly bedraggled. He couldn’t fly as his feathers were still heavy with salt water, so he tucked himself into a hollow between the nearest rocks. Unfortunately, the tide was still coming in fast, so he knew that he would have to move again very soon. For the moment, however, it was too hard to find the energy, so Algy just sat there staring out bleakly at the sea, which was obviously feeling very playful in the brisk south-westerly wind. It reminded him of a short poem by Walter de la Mare:

          The sea laments
          The livelong day,
          Fringing its waste of sand;
          Cries back the wind from the whispering shore –
          No words I understand:
          Yet echoes in my heart a voice,
          As far, as near, as these –
          The wind that weeps,
          The solemn surge
          Of strange and lonely seas.

Algy dedicates this GIF especially to Erika, and to his other Tumblr friends who love the sea but live far away from it.

[Algy is quoting the poem Echoes by the early 20th century English poet Walter de la Mare.]

The sea was providing Algy with an exciting rollercoaster ride – perhaps just a wee bit too exciting. But he was managing to avoid the rocks, and he could see that the storm was subsiding and the sky was beginning to clear. Ever the optimist, Algy felt confident that things would be sure to improve very soon …